A new month brings a new Word of the Month!
But before I say anything else, let me express my thoughts and prayers for the people that have lost so much due to the tornadoes and storms last week. My husband's stepsister lost her home and car in Tuscaloosa, AL. More tragic is that her neighbors' baby was killed. Someone that I know and respect lost his home in North Georgia. He, his wife and children are all okay, but they, too, have a neighbor who lost a child. This past weekend I talked to a young woman in Greenville, SC, who formerly lived in Tuscaloosa and she had a friend that was killed. A young man that checked me out of a local store last week had several friends from the University of Alabama that he couldn't get in touch with the day after the tornado and he was worried sick. Here in the South, it seems everyone knows someone who has been touched by this terrible tragedy. Let's all keep praying and supporting those whose lives will be forever changed and saddened by this course of events.
With that said, let me continue with happier thoughts....
I have taken an unexpected hiatus from the blog due to several factors, but I'm back! Consider yourself warned.........
I've thought a great deal about what this month's word would be. For a few seconds I considered tying it in with the fantastic news of Osama Bin Laden's death. The word perseverance came to mind since our troops have never given up in the almost 10 years since the Twin Towers came down. But that would be too easy, too obvious, and we will get lots of that theme in the days to come. So I have decided to take a different tack. Sometimes, in this world of madness, words just need to be lovely and pretty and give us something to reflect on, don't you agree?
Which brings me to Prince William and Kate's wedding. I know, we have all heard it and watched the coverage till we are sick of it and that's not where this is going. What it IS leading to, is that with the beautiful spring weather here over the weekend, watching the Royal Wedding in London that was decked out in its finest, talking to my son-in-law and daughter about upcoming vacations and possibly some hiking in the Appalachians has put me in a state of wanderlust. The month of May particularly, in full springtime mode and on the cusp of early summer, lends itself to wanderlust and thinking of exotic places, at least in my world.
Isn't that a terrific word to say outloud? Wanderlust. Say it with me...."wanderlust". It isn't just about wanting to travel. Oh, no, it has an air of something mystical and intriguing, mysterious and beckoning. The definition of wanderlust is "...a strong desire for or impulse to wander or travel and explore the world...." I like this one - "a strong, innate desire to rove or travel about". And that my friends, is what I have...an "innate" urge to go somewhere, experience something new, explore new horizons. Coming from the German language, it means literally "Wandern" - to hike - and "Lust" - desire..
But, alas, my wanderlust is unfulfilled. Other than a trip to Hilton Head this August, which, don't get me wrong, I am looking forward to immensely, I have no plans to scratch my wanderlust itch. It is the places I haven't been to and have wanted to see that are calling to me today. For years I have had certain destinations on my "bucket" list. These are destinations that I don't want to visit for just a few days, but to explore at leisure, as if there were no time schedules or deadlines to adhere to. And recently, as I approach 59 years of age, I am beginning to doubt that I shall ever go to most of them. Having to work and having limited resources (money) puts a damper on wanderlust.
However, does one ever get too old to dream? I hope not. It would be a sad day if, at a certain age, all dreams die off and never return, don't you think? The death of dreams strikes certain words and ideas from your life, your very soul, and that is not a place I can go to in my deepest inner being.
So, you ask, where is it exactly that my wanderlust would lead me? Ah, that is easy to answer. Here is a short run-down of destinations that take up my dreams of flight:
2) Alaska: Land of the Midnight Sun, The Last Frontier State. This is a state of grandeur, glaciers, mountains. Denali, the highest summit in North America, calls for me to come and hike, not climb, mind you, but just hike in the lower levels. Once known as Mt. McKinley, Denali (meaning The High One) and its National Park lands are beautiful from all accounts that I have read or heard. I want to salmon fish, see Kodiak bears and sled dogs, lumberjacks and Yupik Indians, take a day cruise along the coast or on a river to see whales and seals, stay in a cabin. But most of all, I want to talk to the locals to get a sense of the mindset of living in a more challenging environment than that of the lower 48.
So there you have my main wanderlust list. Believe me, these are just a few of the places I want to visit. In the meantime, I will have my dreams and make my plans. In my imagination I can wander to no end and satisfy my longings with the placation of "maybe someday" to soothe my gypsy soul.
Do you ever have wanderlust? Or are you a homebody? What are your dreams of travel? Come share where you want to wander off to and why! I would love to hear from any of you! Maybe there is a place I have never considered that you can tell me about.
Bon Voyage and Happy Trails!